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A newsletter for members of the New England Employee Benefits Council

Fall 2015
In This Issue
Upcoming Programs
Membership Essentials
In the News...
Resource Directory
Follow NEEBC Online
Scholarship Program
Quick Links
Best Practices Conference
New at NEEBC
Aetna White Paper: Get a Sharper View of Medical Costs Across Carriers
Mercer White Paper: Employee Well-Being - A New Way to Define Organizational Success
Discounts for NEEBC Members
Member Briefs
Upcoming Programs
      November 5        
November 19 
How To

ACA:  Race to the Finish!

November 23
Next Generation
Benefit Resolutions:
Strategic Planning for the Coming Year

December 3 
Best Practices Conference

December 15
Benefits Club
The Battle for Talent:
Recruiting with Benefits
March 10 - 11, 2016    
  Membership Essentials
NEEBC offers a variety of membership opportunities to meet the needs of a diverse community of benefit professionals.

Read what our members have to say.

New to NEEBC?  Find the best membership for you and your organization.

Current members - please Renew today.

View the membership video here and see why your friends and colleagues value their NEEBC membership.
Thanks to Our Annual Corporate Partners





In the News...
The Auto Savings Generation:  Steering Millennials to Better Retirement Outcomes

Baby boomers were the first generation with access to defined contribution (DC) plans throughout a meaningful part of their working careers.  In a similar way, millennials are the first generation with access to automatic enrollment and automatic investment options in DC plans throughout the early years of their working lives.  In this paper, Vanguard highlights some of the generational differences observed in their recordkeeping data over a ten-year period. 

How have generational patterns of saving and investing changed in DC retirement plans?

Read the research paper by Jean Young at Vanguard.    
Resource Directory
NEEBC's Benefits Resource Directory   is an easy-to-use guide to regional benefits products and services, providing numerous categorical listings. Please consider directory advertisers when purchasing products or services.  Sign up today.
Follow NEEBC Online
Follow NEEBC's new
LinkedIn Company Page
for all the latest information

Follow us on Twitter

Scholarship Program
Established in 1990, NEEBC has awarded 51 scholarships for the advancement of professionals in the employee benefits field, totaling $165,500.

This year's Russell A. Gaudreau, Jr. Scholarship Award Winner is Danielle Ring. 

This year's Michael P. Zingg Memorial Scholarship Award Winner is Scott Riordan.

Scholarship applications are available online, and part-time and full-time students are eligible.  We especially encourage NEEBC members to apply.
Quick Links
Member Briefs -
Kudos to All

Glenn Alonzo, Senior Vice President & Consultant, Sibson consulting, is celebrating his 25th Anniversary with the firm.  Sibson is a member of The Segal Group, a national Human Resources, Actuarial and Benefits Consulting firm.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute announced the promotion of Robin Antonellis to Vice President of Human Resources (photo below).
Karen Bishop
is now Associate Director of Benefits at Shire.

Verlinda DiMarino,
has been promoted to  
AVP & Manager, Strategic Benefits Initiatives - Corporate Benefits, Liberty Mutual Insurance.
Colleen Doherty,
Senior Vice President, Compliance and Client Services, Eastern Benefits Group, was selected as Employee Benefit Adviser's 2015 Most Influential Women in Benefit Advising.
The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) congratulates Allison Ellis on her promotion to Global Benefits Operations Manager.   Ryan Dolin recently joined BCG as Global Benefits Manager. 

Susan Glover has been named Client Relationship Manager & Director of Corporate Wellness for 360 Corporate Benefit Advisors.

Jennifer Glowik, is now Senior Consultant at Sullivan Benefits.

Jane Holland
is now Human Resources Director at Rue La La.

Hooker & Holcombe launched a new brand that unites the parent company with its two subsidiaries - Hooker & Holcombe Retirement Services, Inc. and Hooker & Holcombe Investment Advisors, Inc.  The firm also launched Pension Outsourcing - an innovative approach that helps plan sponsors better manage their retirement plans by choosing only the level of service needed.

Erin Lenox, Senior Vice President, Willis of MA Human Capital Practice, was named Power Broker in the Employee Benefits category by Risk & Insurance MagazineWillis North America received a Gold Award for its comprehensive wellness program from The National Business Group on Health's Best Employers for Healthy Lifestyle. 
Patty Rich was promoted to Vice President of Sales for Neighborhood Health Plan.  In just three years, Patty helped NHP nearly double commercial memberships, culminating in NHP's emergence as one of the fastest growing health plans in MA.

Heather Ritchie recently joined Zakipoint Health as Vice President of Product.  She is an accomplished healthcare executive and graduate of the T.H. Chan School of Public Health at Harvard University.  She presented at a NEEBC Benefits Club this summer. 
A message from Karen Hunter,
President, NEEBC Board of Directors

     It's November - a time, traditionally, to be thankful.  If your professional life is anything like mine, this month will be spent wrapping up fall activities and preparing for year-end. For me, it's finishing up our Annual Benefits Enrollment and preparing for ACA reporting, and I'm thankful for the former, and the latter, not so much! 
     The NEEBC staff and various committees are busily at work on the remaining programs for the year and starting to plan for next year's events. It's been a great year so far for NEEBC! We've held 40 events with about 1,300 attendees, and are grateful for the 110 amazing speakers that make our programs possible. In 2015 we welcomed almost 100 new individual members and 14 organizational members, bringing our membership total to more than 1,200. We've updated the website, continued to broaden our social media presence and introduced eLearning opportunities. The Mentoring, Women in Benefits and Scholarship programs have been extremely successful in providing opportunities for members to meet, share experiences and grow in their careers.
     The 17th Annual Best Practices Conference on December 3 rd is one of our biggest programs, and this year's lineup is impressive. Not only will the program feature engaging speakers and showcase some innovative programs, it is also a great opportunity to connect with your fellow NEEBC members and colleagues. I hope to see you there!
     I am thankful to be affiliated with this great organization, and I hope that you, too, have benefited from your membership this year.  On behalf of the Board, officers and staff of NEEBC, I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving and thank you for your membership and support. If you have ideas for how we can make NEEBC even better in the coming year, we'd love to hear from you.
The Intersection of Cost and Quality:  How Will We Pay for Quality Health Care?

Why You Should Attend:
  • Find out how employers are leading the way to manage rising health care costs with limited resources
  • Hear about innovative programs that have tackled benefits challenges
  • Learn about the latest trends in the health care and retirement industries
  • Gain new insights to better manage the benefits challenges ahead
Keynote Speaker
What's New in Health Care:  The Opportunities and Challenges Ahead

Andrew Webber, President and CEO, Maine Health Management Coalition
Speaker and Panel Moderator
Prescription Drugs:  Miracle Cures and Skyrocketing Costs - How Will We Pay?

Dr. Jerry Avorn, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, and Chief, Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics, Brigham and Women's Hospital
  • David Dross, Partner, National Pharmacy Practice Leader, Mercer
  • Dr. Susan Maddux, Chief Pharmacy Officer, UnitedHealthcare Pharmacy
  • Joan O'Rourke, Vice President Specialty Program Management, Specialty Pharmacy Programs, CVS
  • Ross Thompson, Executive Director of Pharmacy, Tufts Medical Center
Congratulations to this year's Best Practices Winners!

Join us at the conference to Learn About: 
  • EnerNOC's change to an open time-off policy coupled with improved maternity and family leave, reducing the company's financial liability while improving employee satisfaction.
  • Kronos' total rewards strategy that incorporated workforce investment, corporate giving, and promotion of employee physical and emotional health, which translated into a Best-in-Class rank in employee engagement.
  • Liberty Mutual's implementation of a simplified retirement investment menu combined with re-enrollment, which increased participation and decreased expenses.
  • Tufts Health Plan's community garden that improved employees' food choices and exercise opportunities while helping to foster teamwork and morale.

For the first time, NEEBC will recognize new benefit professionals who have demonstrated exceptional promise, dedication and accomplishment.     

Meet this year's Rising Star Award Winners:

  • Dawn Condry, HR Benefits Representative, EMC
  • Erin Devine, Benefits Specialist, CBG Benefits
  • Jessica Lord, Benefits Manager, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Special thanks to our conference sponsors (as of Oct. 29th):


Gold Sponsors 

Blue Cross Blue Shield of MA
Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
Liberty Mutual
Neighborhood Health Plan
Premier Diagnostics Services, Inc.
Securian Financial Group
Tufts Health Plan

 Silver Sponsors

Abacus Health Solutions
Delta Dental of MA
KGA, Inc.
Marsh & McLennan Agency
The Segal Company/Sibson Consulting
New at NEEBC 

Please welcome Kerry Donovan, our new Administrative Assistant for NEEBC.  Kerry provides administrative support and data base management for all membership transactions, including program registration, entering new members, invoicing, and payment transactions.

Welcome to the 44 New Members who have joined
NEEBC in the past few months. 

Welcome to the 3 New Organizations who have recently joined: Fallon Health, Marathon Physical Therapy, and The Town of Burlington.

Board Member Updates 

Dennis Charland, Senior Vice President, Sales, Vitals, Inc.

Dennis Charland, a Director with NEEBC, has accepted the role of Senior Vice President of Sales with Vitals, Inc., a leading national cost and quality transparency company.  In addition to serving the many existing health plan and employer customers of Vitals, Dennis will be focused on expanding those health plan relationships, as well as introducing a newly acquired service that provides patients cash incentives for re-directing or selecting lower cost, high-quality care through the combination of search history and proprietary predictive analytics.  Most importantly, Dennis will be staying in this geography and is very excited to continue his strong relationship and support of NEEBC.
 Aetna White Paper:  Get a Sharper View of Medical Costs Across Carriers

Discounts only tell part of the story when it comes to medical costs.  And with only part of the story, this can be at a costly disadvantage.


It's time to put your medical carriers' performance under the microscope so you can make the most informed decisions when it comes to managing your company's health programs.  Beginning this fall, brokers, consultants and carriers alike will have the opportunity to use an evaluation method called Total Cost of Care.  This methodology estimates your medical savings, considering total cost per member per month instead of the Net Effective Discounts (NED) approach.


It's no secret NED has flaws - it's been documented for years as the industry strived to develop a more reliable calculation.  Total Cost of Care is a measure that provides fair comparisons when evaluating how effectively each carrier manages cost in each market.  This view of your overall estimated medical savings means more complete calculations that you can share up the chain of command.   


You're in the driver's seat with the performance of your benefits program, so make sure that you leverage the tools available to assess and choose the right administrator.


Read the entire article. 

 Mercer White Paper:  Employee Well-Being -
A New Way to Define Organizational Success

When Employees Thrive, Businesses Win

This is a truism, to be sure, but achieving this goal requires both employers and employees to think and act in new ways.

Before examining just what "new" means in this context, let's take a brief look at the status quo.  Today, most employers assess the success of a people strategy against a limited set of individual goals - most often health-related behaviors or biometric measures.  The terms most frequently used for employer initiatives in this area - wellness and health management - take a narrow view of the constellation of employee behaviors employers need to encourage and support.  By moving beyond this tightly focused perspective, we gain the flexibility and breadth to address the many interrelated factors that contribute to individual and collective success.

The dimensions of well-being are interrelated, and by solving for the whole rather than a part, employers can maximize performance and make their organizations great places to work.

Read the entire article.
Discounts for NEEBC Members
Member Briefs - Kudos to All
Employees from UnitedHealthcare, a NEEBC Annual Corporate Partner, lifted a slide piece into place as more than 200 UnitedHealthcare and Roxbury-area volunteers, along with New England Patriots and New England Revolution players, built a new playground at Children's Services of Roxbury. This playground build is part of UnitedHealthcare's "Do Good. Live Well." program, an employee-volunteer initiative to help prevent obesity. The volunteers worked with KaBOOM!, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing play to all kids. The Children's Services of Roxbury playground is the 2,688th KaBOOM!-organized build since 1996, and the 19th created by KaBOOM! and UnitedHealthcare.